Journal:Journal of Rehabilitation Research and Development (JRRD) (formerly the Bulletin of Prosthetics Research)
Year, Volume, Issue, Page(s):16, 53, 2, 279-294
Study determined the deficit rates for transfer component skills among veterans who use wheelchairs and explored the relationship between deficit rates and subject characteristics. Seventy-four men and 18 women performed up to four transfers independently from their wheelchair to a mat table while a therapist evaluated their transfer techniques using the Transfer Assessment Instrument. The highest deficit rates concerned the improper use of handgrips (63 percent). Other common problems included not setting the wheelchair up at the proper angle (50 percent) and not removing the armrest (58 percent). Veterans over 60 years old and veterans with moderate shoulder pain were more likely to set up their wheelchairs inappropriately than younger veterans and veterans with mild shoulder pain. Women were less likely to remove their armrests than men. Subjects with disabilities other than spinal cord injury were less inclined to set themselves up for a safe and easy transfer than the subjects with spinal cord injury. The results provide insight into the disparities present in transfer skills among veterans and will inform the development of future transfer training programs both within and outside of the Department of Veterans Affairs.